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Monday, November 24, 2008

More wet pants, and recognising the fish whistle

There are few sights more pitiful than a man standing outside the caravan holding his track pants demanding dry undies… except maybe noticing said man talking to the neighbours holding aforementioned track pants in hand… yes, unfortunately this is a new story, and not a repeat of a previously regaled episode.

On this occasion the protagonist was going kayaking. The weather was cloudy, but calm, and there were no signs of the impending disaster. Of course, there was the usual back and forth and in and out of the van associated with such a venture. ‘Where’s such and such?’ or ‘Have you seen the thingy whatsit?’ The kayak had been taken across the road (i.e. dirt track through the camp ground) to the little beach about 20 metres from where we’re camped, and as he put it in the water it splashed up inside. Being a cooler day, and wanting to minimise wetness to his posterior, he popped back to the car to get a rag to wipe it up.

Being happily oblivious to the happenings outside I glanced out the window and was greeted by the baffling sight mentioned earlier. ‘How odd’ I thought to myself, coming to the conclusion that he must be now ready to set out, and had decided to take off his long pants (usually worn as sun protection) and wear shorts. Still, he would normally change closer to the van, rather than stand pant-less talking to neighbours… I returned to whatever it was I was doing until the van door suddenly burst open.

I need dry undies!

What? (Is this déjà vu???)

Do I have to explain?


I fell in.


I came back to get a rag, and then the people were yelling, and then when I got back the tide had come in really quickly and the boat was on its way to Antarctica…

So he did what is apparently done in an emergency and whipped his pants off, retrieving the boat and only managing to wet the bottom half of his shirt and inside fleece vest. (What was he doing wearing his inside fleece in the boat? ‘I couldn’t be bothered changing.’)

In his words, ‘I’ve spent our whole time away initiating with people, and the one time people actually initiate with me I’m in wet undies holding my pants! They wanted to know about the kayaks – how much they cost, do we like them, etc, so I just tried to pretend that nothing out of the ordinary was happening [Ed. - The sad thing is, this is becoming ‘not out of the ordinary’.] and just chatted…’

I am very pleased to report that the following day we both went kayaking without any pant-removing incidents (although there was a minor emergency when he thought he had a big stinging ant in his dacks, and they were briefly half removed...).

Yesterday he went out fishing and when he came home whistling my first thought was ‘sounds like a happy whistle – maybe he caught something’. That was closely followed by another ‘I hope he’s not holding his pants and pretending that nothing’s wrong’ thought… I cautiously peered out the window to be greeted by two fish – barracuda. I’m sure I ordered salmon. He did have another big fish on apparently, but it was so big it snapped his line… another lost lure in the line of duty. At least now I know what the ‘I’ve caught a fish’ whistle sounds like.